The British ambassador to Somalia, Harriet Mathews has arrived in Hargeisa, Somaliland’s capital and met with President Siilaanyo and members of his cabinet.
In a press release designed to hoodwink Somalilanders about the nature of the visit of the British ambassador to Somalia was circulated by the newly appointed of presidential spokesman, Mr. Abdirahman Fahiye in which he described the visit of the Ambassador Harriet Mathews as part of the mutual relations between Somaliland and Briton.
“President Silaanyo has shared the progress of Somaliland’s voting registration system with the British ambassador and he expressed Somaliland’s appreciation of the British assistance in the democratisation process and contributions towards Somaliland Development Fund” Was said in the press released emailed to press and news websites.
The press release by Somaliland presidential spokesman mentioned how the British ambassadors appreciate to witness what the is being described as the major developments Hargeisa has undergone since last visit in last year.
The British ambassador to Somalia, Ms Harriet Mathews who presented her diplomatic credentials to Somalia’s president when Her Majesty appointed in March 2015 and replaced ambassador Neil Wigan is reported that the purpose for her visit to Somaliland is not officially shared with Somalilanders and usual statements were made about in order to sidetrack the major issue of Somaliland’s recognition and the true nature of ambassador Mathews visit to Hargeisa.
However Ambassador Mathews tweeted about her visit and said “With President Silanyo in
#Hargeisadiscussing elections, drought conditions, security & UK partnership”.
No mentioning where Hargeisa is and what country is president Silanyo is for a president, ambassador Mathews was too diplomatic in her tweet.
In the press release detailing what the meeting between President Silanyo and his vice, the foreign, the national development and information ministers, among others were attended were mainly talked about President Silanyo briefing the British delegate on Somaliland’s current situation including the drought hit Somaliland regions and the security.
The British ambassador Mathews accompanied by the deputy ambassador to Ethiopia, Ms Cat Evans promised to escalate the calls for International help for Somaliland’s drought.
“Speaking on the drought hit Somaliland, Ms Mathews promised that she will escalate the call for drought assistance and soon urgent response will reach those affected by the drought” was said in the press release by Somaliland’s Presidential Spokesman.
The visit of Amb. Mathews with deputy Amb. Cat Evans who is from the British Embassy in Ethiopia and as the FCO’s website clearly states that provides support to British Embassy Mogadishu on Somaliland underlines that Somaliland has lost its diplomatic leverage with the Briton and it is now under Mogadishu indirectly.
Despite of the PR pictures and statements from Somaliland’s presidential which tightly controls what the Somaliland public should know about foreign visitors and the diplomatic signalling by the British diplomats it is not clear what went behind the door in Somaliland Presidential and more questions are asked then answers about the true nature of the Amb. Mathews visit to Somaliland.